So if you’re thinking about going on exchange it’s fairly important to know a bit about the actual teaching style at your uni -so here’s a bit about UQ.

The learning style is pretty different from at home it seems a lot more group work and communication based and fewer labs. Also the courses are open to pretty much anyone at the uni so although they go into detail they also spend some time reiterating the basics. Although I’m finding this quite helpful as obviously I havn’t taken the same courses that the standard student in my class would have.

My microbes and human health module seems really similar to content that I’ve already done at Edinburgh with slight variations and a bit more detail on particular pathogens. But so far it has been mainly revision. My physiology and pathophysiology course seems the most difficult, and goes into a lot more detail on really specific areas than what I did last year. The lecturers tend to talk specifically about their current research, so the course covers very specific areas. But I guess this may be because it’s a 3rd year course and the next step for Australian students is to apply for honours. The general university system is a bit different here. You do 3 years undergrad and then can apply for a 1 year honours project if you want to go into further study/research.

My biomedical science course is quite strange as it is supposed to be the “capstone” course for biomed majors. This means that it is supposed to help with the expected graduate atributes other than knowledge of the subject area. There’s no exam for this course but we have to do 3 group projects then individual essays based on ethics, communication and data handling. This one is mainly tutorial based and the lectures occur for a few weeks and then we have a few weeks off from them.So far I’ve done the communication and data handling projects. Data handling was pretty horrible -but at least it’s over now!

My other course is Australia’s terrestrial environment which I am taking mainly for the field trips. We’ve learnt about the history of australia’s plant and animal life, climate, current plant life and now are currently studying Australia’s animals. This course is really good because there’s a fieldtrip to Fraser Island which I just went to last week. It was so much fun but it deserves its own post so I’ll wait to tell you all about it.

So I hope this may have helped a bit if you’re considering coming to UQ. Sorry it is so specific to Biology. From what I hear from people on other courses though their workload is also pretty high compared to at home. Assessment is a lot more continuous. Some of your assignments might only be worth 5% but there are a lot more of them. Hopefully this means exams will be easier though 🙂


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